Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Tesla's Frank Hannon on This Weeks Focus on Metal


Episode 433 - Frank Hannon

Lots of stuff going on this week. First up we talk with guitarist Frank Hannon from Tesla after that we have a chat with Marc LaBelle from upcoming LA band Dirty Honey.

Get all your Tesla info at teslatheband.com  keep up with Frank at his site frankhannon.com
Check out Dirty Honey at dirtyhoney.com

Here's a track off of Tesla's latest release "Shock"

Here's the single off Dirty Honey's S/T EP

Track of the week comes to us courtesy of Demon Dolls Records artist Platinum Overdose. Check them out at demondollrecords.com

Get the this episode from the Focus on Metal SiteThe Focus on Metal RSS feed, or subscribe on iTunes.

You can hear us every Tuesday night on Pure Rock Radio
and each Wednesday afternoon on Metal World Radio

Visit http://focusonmetal.net/ for information on all the past episodes and to find the links to all our other social media sites.

Hey did we mention that we got named to Feedspot.com's 

Top 20 Metal Music Audio Podcasts & Radio You Must Subscribe and Listen to in 2019

Check out the entire esteemed list of shows on that list as well as all the rest that Feedspot has to offer at: blog.feedspot.com/metal_music_podcasts/

And as always

Focus On Metal…Everything Else is Insignificant.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Black Star Riders - Another State Of Grace (Nuclear Blast Records)

Image result for black star riders another state of grace 

   When Scott Gorham and Brian Downey decided to reboot Thin Lizzy a few years ago it went so well the plan was to release new music. Thankfully wiser heads prevailed (it would NEVER have been accepted) and Black Star Riders was born. It's been a slow and steady rise ever since and even now there are some who still see the band as a Thin Lizzy knock off. Yes Ricky Warwick sounds at times like Phil but he's from Ireland and is a huge fan and Scott was an integral part of that band for so many years. Then there's the line up changes losing Marco Mendoza, Jimmy DeGrasso and more importantly Damon Johnson who was Ricky's right hand man when it came to songwriting.

   So now the band are back with a new drummer in Chad Szeliga, Stone Sour guitarist Christian Martucci and new producer Jay Ruston and have come up with probably the best album they've done. It's quality over quantity and with only 10 songs clocks in at the 40 minute mark. The way albums should be. Highlights are the celtic tinged title track, Tonight The Moonlight Let Me Down featuring a sax solo from Michael Monroe and What Will It Take. Yes, Ricky Warwick is a great lyricist and really underrated. I'm going to be playing this album for a long time.

Richie.

 https://www.blackstarriders.com/

Michael Sweet- Ten (Rat Pak Records)

Image result for michael sweet ten 

    Is there anyone in rock more prolific now then Michael Sweet? In an era when most nostalgia acts rest on their laurels and play the hits Michael in the last five years or so has released 3 Stryper albums, 2 albums with George Lynch and two solo albums including the very well received One Sided War. I've interviewed Michael a bunch of times and he's told me he always wants to write and we the audience have benefited from that with some stellar music.

   This is a consistently heavier album then One Sided War and at times reminds me of 90's Megadeth especially on Lay It Down, Never Alone and Shine, Michael's vocals are also a little grittier in line with the music. Let There Be Love is the sole ballad and is well written but sounds a little out of place compared to the rest of the songs. The decision to add guest soloists was a great idea and there's some fantastic playing by Ethan Brosh, Joel Hoekstra, Rich Ward and Jeff Loomis that hopefully will attract younger fans to Michael's music.

   So will I give this a ten? No, I'm giving it an eight and maybe a nine. It's a great heavy metal album from a guy who shows no sign of slowing down and I genuinely believe his best music is ahead of him. It's out October 11th.

Richie.

https://www.ratpakrecordsamerica.com/home

https://www.michaelsweet.com/

     

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

10 Years of Queensryche's American Soldier This Week on Focus on Metal


Episode 432 - 10 Years of American Soldier


On March 31, 2009 Queensryche released their eleventh studio album “American Soldier”. Producer and co-writer of the album Jason Slater, our guest once again this week talked in depth with Brian J Heaton about the entire album and we are privileged to bring that chat to you. 



Get the this episode from the Focus on Metal SiteThe Focus on Metal RSS feed, or subscribe on iTunes.

You can hear us every Tuesday night on Pure Rock Radio
and each Wednesday afternoon on Metal World Radio

Visit http://focusonmetal.net/ for information on all the past episodes and to find the links to all our other social media sites.

Hey did we mention that we got named to Feedspot.com's 

Top 20 Metal Music Audio Podcasts & Radio You Must Subscribe and Listen to in 2019

Check out the entire esteemed list of shows on that list as well as all the rest that Feedspot has to offer at: blog.feedspot.com/metal_music_podcasts/

And as always

Focus On Metal…Everything Else is Insignificant.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Guy Allison From Unruly Child Guests on This Weeks Focus on Metal


Episode 431 - Unruly Child


Our guest this week is keyboardist Guy Allison. One of the bands Guy is known for is melodic hard rock artists Unruly Child. We last heard from the band in 2017 but they are back with their latest release “Big Blue World”. This week Guy will talk about the writing of the new album plus gives a lot of insight into the early days and first Unruly Child release back in 1992.

Be sure to check out Richie's full review of the album in his blog post https://focusonmetal.blogspot.com/2019/08/unruly-child-big-blue-world-frontiers.html

Get the this episode from the Focus on Metal SiteThe Focus on Metal RSS feed, or subscribe on iTunes.

You can hear us every Tuesday night on Pure Rock Radio
and each Wednesday afternoon on Metal World Radio

Visit http://focusonmetal.net/ for information on all the past episodes and to find the links to all our other social media sites.

Hey did we mention that we got named to Feedspot.com's 

Top 20 Metal Music Audio Podcasts & Radio You Must Subscribe and Listen to in 2019

Check out the entire esteemed list of shows on that list as well as all the rest that Feedspot has to offer at: blog.feedspot.com/metal_music_podcasts/

And as always

Focus On Metal…Everything Else is Insignificant.

Friday, September 6, 2019

ROB HALFORD GETS IN THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT WITH ‘CELESTIAL’ ANNOUNCES ARIZONA APPEARANCE



Without question, Rob Halford is one of heavy metal’s all-time great vocalists - as heard through his highly influential and groundbreaking work with Judas Priest. But over his career, he has also proven able to master a variety of other styles vocally - including holiday-themed music. And in time for this holiday season, Halford will be releasing an all-new album, entitled Celestial (released October 18th via Legacy Recordings), and a day later, will be signing CD or LP purchases of the album at FYE Arizona Mills at 2:00 P.M (in Tempe, Arizona). Details to follow closer to the event.

The album will also be available for pre-order on Rob’s artist store - with exclusive merchandise and a limited, autographed metallic-gold color version of the vinyl. 

Please visit the Rob Halford store here: https://RobHalford.lnk.to/D2CPR

Credited to Rob Halford with Family and Friends, the album mixes holiday classics with all-new compositions, and will appeal to lovers of traditional holiday music and headbangers alike. “The great thing about heavy metal is it’s got these kinds of multiple dimensions,” explains the man also known as the Metal God. “I think when you look at it from an outside point of view - if you’re not really familiar with the metal scene - it can look pretty intimidating. And it is a very strong, powerful experience. But it comes at different levels. I think the music that we’ve made on Celestial, for example, gives a display of that. Metal maniacs - as we call ourselves - are just as ready for the holidays as everybody else. And what we’ve tried to do with this music is to reach out to as many of those metal dimensions as we possibly can.” 
 
And judging from the “Rob Halford with Family and Friends” banner, Celestial sees Halford joined by a supporting cast of those very close to him - his brother (Nigel) on drums, his nephew on bass (Alex, son of Priest bassist Ian Hill), has sister (Sue) on bells, and twin guitar tandem of Robert Jones and Jon Blakey. 
 
Once all the contributors were in place, Halford “went away and listened to a lot holiday music and Christmas carols. Traditional stuff. 12 tracks - including original tracks that I’m particularly excited about. And in that way, because of the dimensions of each song and the messages of each song, I think we cover a really broad platform. To me, more than anything, I wanted it to have its own characteristics and be a little bit more different than the regular rock n’ roll Christmas album.”
 
Halford has certainly accomplished this goal, as evidenced by such standout originals as the album-opening title track, “Donner and Blitzen,” and “Protected by the Light,” as well as reworkings of such holiday standards as “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” “Joy to the World,” and “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing,” among other standouts. “‘Donner and Blitzen’ gets the snowball rolling for Celestial - a song full of excitement, love and hope,” says Rob. “You can hear and feel the power of Christmas time - energy roarin’ with rockin’ reindeers haulin’!” The video for ‘Donner and Blitzen’ can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkSYiKHhp0E
 

“I think the holidays for any family are a mixture of fun and excitement and apprehension of the whole event. The magic of it more than anything else. It’s just a beautiful time of year - which a lot of us wish would be for every day of the year. It’s a beautiful thing as far as bringing families together. So, what better way to celebrate it than with your family, friends...and music. You must have music at Christmas time.”
 
And with the arrival of Celestial, Rob Halford has certainly done his part.

To download and stream the new album please visit here: 
https://RobHalford.lnk.to/CelestialPR

‘Celestial’ tracklist:

Side A

1.       Celestial [new song]
2.       Donner and Blitzen [new song]
3.       God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
4.       Away In A Manger
5.       Morning Star [new song]
6.       Deck The Halls
 

Side B
1.       Joy To The World
2.       O Little Town Of Bethlehem
3.       Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
4.       The First Noel
5.       Good King Wenceslas
6.       Protected By The Light [new song]
 

FYE in-store details:
 
Date/time: Saturday, October 19th at 2:00 P.M        
Location: FYE Arizona Mills (5000 Arizona Mills Circle #612 – Tempe, AZ 85282)
 
 

FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE VISIT:

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Robin McAuley Guest Once Again on This Weeks Focus on Metal


Episode 430 - Save Yourself

The sophomore McAuley Schenker Group release “Save Yourself” turns 30 this year. October 10th if you’re keeping track. This week, perpetually busy guy Robin McAuley drops by to talk about that classic album along with the upcoming sophomore Michael Schenker Fest release “Revelation” and a bit about the secret project he’s doing with Jeff Pilson, Reb Beach, and Matt Starr.

Here's a preview track off the new Schenker Fest release.

A bit of Robin showing he still does those 30 year old tracks as good as always.

Get the this episode from the Focus on Metal SiteThe Focus on Metal RSS feed, or subscribe on iTunes.

You can hear us every Tuesday night on Pure Rock Radio
and each Wednesday afternoon on Metal World Radio

Visit http://focusonmetal.net/ for information on all the past episodes and to find the links to all our other social media sites.

Hey did we mention that we got named to Feedspot.com's 

Top 20 Metal Music Audio Podcasts & Radio You Must Subscribe and Listen to in 2019

Check out the entire esteemed list of shows on that list as well as all the rest that Feedspot has to offer at: blog.feedspot.com/metal_music_podcasts/

And as always

Focus On Metal…Everything Else is Insignificant.

Monday, September 2, 2019

Tom#KeiferBand- Rise (Cleopatra Records)

 Image result for tom keifer rise songs

   Tom and I go back a long way. The first vinyl album I purchased with my own money was Cinderella's Night Songs in Dublin and I had to travel 100 miles to get it. My first big outdoor show was Donington in 1987 with 70,000 plus metalheads and Cinderella opened, imagine what that experience did for 16 year old me. After that every album with him on it was a first day purchase. When I moved to the US nine years ago I saw the band again 5 times in the first two years and even forgave the same set in the same order every time. So I am a fan.

   After his much publicized vocal issues and what he went through to get his voice back any new material feels like bonus time. The Death Of Me and the superb soulful title track tackle all of that. He could have taken the easy road and kept Cinderella active and just done live shows but he doesn't do easy. Start from the ground up, get a killer band around him and just be happy. Waiting On The Demons on Rise might be a veiled reference to his former Cinderella band member and his alcohol issues, like why go back to that situation.

   Elsewhere All Amped Up definitely has that rocking Cinderella sound, Hype sounds like nothing he's done before having a slightly modern feel and closing ballad You Believe In Me features Tom, an acoustic guitar and one of the most heartfelt vocal performances I've heard in years. This is a great album from a great talent. It's released on September 13th.

http://www.tomkeifer.com/

Richie.